Erik ten Hag in profile as Man Utd 'open talks' with Ajax boss
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Manchester United are primed to bring in Erik ten Hag this summer, with the 52-year-old the clear frontrunner to take over from Ralf Rangnick at the end of the campaign. And recent reports have suggested he wants to bring Robin van Persie with him to Old Trafford. Should that happen, it would see the 52-year-old stick to a tradition of hiring former players that the club have had in place since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013.
Manchester United will need new coaches if Ten Hag takes over.
And The Mirror have said the 52-year-old has earmarked Van Persie for a potential role, with the Dutch striker tempted by the prospect of returning to Old Trafford.
It would certainly be a bold but popular move, with United previously seeing Van Persie shine under Ferguson, David Moyes and Louis van Gaal prior to his departure to Fenerbahce in 2015.
And any comeback for the 38-year-old would see the Red Devils stick to this tradition they’ve had since Ferguson’s exit.
Back in 2013, when the Scot departed, United hired Moyes.
And he decided to bring a former player in in the shape of Phil Neville, with the current Inter Miami boss working alongside Chris Round.
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Neville had played under Moyes at Everton, with the duo helping to make the Toffees a solidified Premier League club.
But they were unable to achieve success at United, losing their jobs after just 10 months together at Old Trafford.
After Moyes, United hired Van Gaal.
And he immediately found a role for Ryan Giggs, making the United legend his No 2 with the duo securing FA Cup glory in their second season of working together.
However, with the Red Devils failing to get anywhere near winning the Premier League title, the pair were relieved of their duties in 2016.
That sparked United into hiring Jose Mourinho, who had lost his job at Chelsea mere months previously.
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While Rui Faria was his No 2 throughout the majority of his time at United, he did give Michael Carrick a chance to be part of his coaching set-up.
And Carrick stayed to work under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as well.
Also during Solskjaer’s tenure, Darren Fletcher returned to United to become technical director – with the Scot currently operating in tandem with John Murtough.
Now, Van Persie could be the next player to return to United in some form of capacity.
Ten Hag wants to hit the ground running with the Red Devils and feels his compatriot’s knowledge of the club can be ‘invaluable’.
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The Dutchman has become the frontrunner for the job despite United also admiring Mauricio Pochettino, Julen Loptegui and Luis Enrique.
They want to announce their new manager before the end of the campaign but there is a realisation behind the scenes that they may have to wait until once the season is over.
And what ultimately happens is something only time will tell.
Former United star Gary Neville, meanwhile, thinks his old side may imminently announce their new boss after their dismal 1-1 draw with Leicester on Saturday.
“Because the interview process started publicly seven or ten days ago, I said that you have got to conclude it quite quickly because it could become a bit of a mess,” he said.
“There were already reports earlier in the week that Ten Hag was awaiting details as to whether he would be offered a contract or not.
“I suspect after that performance today, what we will see is a PR spike this week in an approach where the new manager might be named.
“I don’t know, but, for me, it would not surprise me.
“I have spoken in the last couple of weeks about a new manager coming in and everyone thinking ‘that’s OK, we’ll go again’.
“But we have been here for ten years now and it is tough. That was a really tough watch today.”
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